List of Canadian politicians who have crossed the floor

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See also List of Canadian politicians who have switched parties.

This is a list of Canadian politicians who have crossed the floor, in that they have changed party affiliation. These are Members of Parliament (MPs) unless otherwise noted.






As a result of the Conscription Crisis of 1917, Conservative Prime Minister Sir Robert Borden forms a Union Government in an attempt to win support across party lines. Opposition leader Sir Wilfrid Laurier refuses to support the new government but many of his MPs cross the floor to support the new government either as Unionist or Liberal-Unionist candidates in the Canadian federal election of 1917. Those loyal to Laurier run as Laurier-Liberals. Conversely, a number of Quebec Conservative MPs abandon Borden over the conscription issue and join the Liberals.










Other changes[edit]

The following list contains items that, while not generally considered crossing the floor, may be similar in nature.

  • In 1979, Pauline Jewett, who had been a Liberal MP from 1963 to 1965, returns to Parliament as a New Democrat.
  • February 2, 2004: André Bachand, Joe Clark, and John Herron remain Progressive Conservative MPs (and are officially designated as independent Progressive Conservatives) when the Progressive Conservative Party merges with the Canadian Alliance to form the Conservative Party of Canada. Herron runs as a Liberal candidate in the 2004 election but is unsuccessful.
  • In 2004, Canadian Alliance MP Chuck Cadman lost his party renomination race, but ran for re-election as an independent and won. The election resulted in a minority Liberal government, and Cadman's controversial vote to support a 2005 Liberal budget amendment, a confidence vote, was decisive in sustaining the Liberal government.
  • In 2004, former NDP MP Chris Axworthy, who had resigned from Parliament in 1999, attempts to return to the House of Commons as a Liberal but is unsuccessful. He suffers a second defeat in 2006.
  • Former British Columbia NDP Premier Ujjal Dosanjh was elected as a Liberal MP in the 2004 federal election.
  • Former Ontario NDP Premier and MP Bob Rae announced his candidacy for the leadership of the federal Liberals in 2006, and was re-elected to Parliament as a Liberal in 2008. He served as interim Liberal leader between 2011 and 2013.
  • Françoise Boivin, a former Liberal MP who was defeated in the 2006 election, left the Liberal Party in 2008 and ran as a candidate for the New Democratic Party in the 2008 election. She was subsequently elected as a New Democrat in 2011.
  • Jean Charest, the former Premier of Quebec from 2003–2012 and leader of the Quebec Liberal Party from 1998–2012 was also the leader of the federal Progressive Conservative Party from 1995–1998 and a Progressive Conservative MP prior to that.
  • Thomas Mulcair, the leader of the New Democratic Party 2012–2017 was a Member of the National Assembly of Quebec for the Quebec Liberal Party from 1994–2007, when he announced he would not run in that year's provincial election. Later that year, he stood as the NDP candidate in a federal by-election.
  • NDP MP Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury) resigned his seat in order to be appointed the Ontario Liberal Party's candidate in a 2015 provincial by-election. He was briefly re-designated as an independent MP before his resignation became official.
  • The second Green MP, Paul Manly, was originally going run as an NDP MP candidate but was kicked out by his party over his stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.[8] Prior to his eventual win in a 2019 by-election as a Green, he also ran in the 2015 election.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kupfer, Matthew; Florence Ngué-No; The Canadian Press. "Ottawa-area MPP Jack MacLaren expelled from PC caucus", CBC Ottawa, May 28, 2017.
  2. ^ Benzie, Robert. "MPP Jack MacLaren was quitting before PC Leader Patrick Brown fired him", Toronto Star, May 29, 2017.
  3. ^ Jones, Allison (May 29, 2017). "Ontario MPP Jack MacLaren questions official reason for his removal from PC caucus". Global News. The Canadian Press. Retrieved May 29, 2017. He is now technically sitting as an independent, since the Trillium party doesn’t have official party status.
  4. ^ "NDP dumps Quebec MP Pierre Nantel over talks with another party". Toronto Star, August 16, 2019.
  5. ^ Wherry, Aaron (16 August 2019). "Elizabeth May says she has been in talks with ejected NDP MP for 'some considerable time'". CBC News. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  6. ^ August 19, Presse Canadienne Updated: (August 19, 2019). "Ousted from the NDP, Longueuil MP Nantel to run for the Green Party | Montreal Gazette". Montreal Gazette. Retrieved August 19, 2019.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  7. ^ CBC News (19 August 2019). "May confirms ex-New Democrat Pierre Nantel is running as a Green candidate". CBC News. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  8. ^ Mas, Susana (2 July 2014). "NDP blocks Paul Manly, son of former MP, from seeking 2015 bid in B.C." CBC News. Retrieved 6 May 2019.

External links[edit]